Hello bloggers and friends,
I have been silent for longer than normal because I am on a working vacation. My usual pace is 6 a.m. to midnight in the craziness of a large city. A break was much-needed.
For 7 days, I have been enjoying a working vacation in the San Jacinto mountains of Southern California. The town of 3,500 is called Idyllwild. It has all the small town charm you would expect, and then some. There are no billboards or traffic lights. Parking is plentiful and free. World class jazz musicians live here, and you can enjoy their live music in the restaurants every night. Thursday nights showcase Concerts In the Pines, an outdoor venue that brings big talent from all over to play, again, free of charge. Galleries, gift shops, and antique stores line North Circle Drive, the heart of Idyllwild. You may have heard of Idyllwild for two reasons. First, the famous Idyllwild Arts Academy, a boarding high school for talented kids, is located here. Second, Casey Abrams, who graduated from Idyllwild Arts, was a contestant on American Idol this year.
My pace has slowed considerably. I rise at 7, to the sounds of wind and woodpeckers instead of buses and horns. I begin work on my land and house in the forest until about noon, then head to town to visit friends, make new ones, and set up photo shoots. I am working on a project about the people in this quirky town. Idyllwild is a haven for artists, eccentrics, mystics, and philosophers. The people range from genius to criminal. The town is small enough to know which is which. My goal is to photograph a wide range of people. Once a photo shoot or two is finished, I gravitate to a restaurant to see which of the usual suspects is hanging around and catch up on local happenings. I’m home by 10 p.m.
I don’t have cable or internet at home. I have to drive 4 miles to town and go to the local coffee shop that provides free wi-fi. It drove me crazy at first, but now I am moving to the rhythm of the mountain instead of the internet. I don’t care to hear how much the stock market dropped or which celebrity is in rehab. My vacation is soon coming to a close. When I get back to the city, I will post more quotes and photography related info for you. Until then, imagine me on my deck watching the hawks soar above. Chocolate mint ice tea and a good book in hand.